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Can we get a bit of Low-Fantasy Pathfinder?


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Cheliax

Personally I'd love to see an "official" set of (obviously, optional) rules to account for removing magic items completely while not buggering up the CR system; as well as maybe something that allows you to get the benefits of a level more gradually, for people who want slow but steady progression, or who want to run an E8 game with slow leveling but more frequent improvements than you get if you just slow down how often you get levels.

Anyone else have any interest in that?


Not really my cuppa Joe but if you search around Gary at some point i think posted a homebrew set of rules that broke each level into thirds when leveling so that you felt like you go stuff sooner.

Though i will say i would like something to make magic items seem more special. Maybe something similar to the 3.5 vow of poverty progression.

Grand Lodge

Heres what you want...

http://www.seankreynolds.com/rpgfiles/misc/AlternativeLevelAdvancement.pdf

I prefer E7 to E8 myself but thats just me.

As for interest? Lots but Paizo would be cutting its own throat to support yet another rule set within the brand... The Beginner set WAS meant to be a one off ramp into the hobby but you've gotten a lot of people screaming for more - and multiple rulesets etc was what killed TSR. I can't see anything official coming out.

Maybe a 3PP will take it on but truth be told? There are a number of E6 Wiki's that have this well in hand already.

Joining a game? Sure but I'm in Australia and am lucky to get out these days for PFS games let alone any sort of regular commitment.

I have a lot of house rules for a Carrion Crown campaign I *want* to run... but in all practicality, can't due to personal scheduling/family. All the house rules (and Carrion Crown NPCs) are staged around E6 philosophy and also draw inspiration on some of the PFS mechanics on Fame/Prestige.

Cheliax

Those "Steps" aren't a bad way to do the more gradual progression.

Another Ruleset? I'm not talking about another ruleset, just a subsystem a couple pages (with some detail, but no more than 10 pages) long with a fairly refined way of making the game not rely on magic gear, or magic consumeables, perhaps with some notes about anything to look out for with specific classes or what have you. Maybe some tips on what to do if you also remove full casters (and now dont have much in the way of available healing either).

Between that and the Step System you just pointed out (Awesome btw) you could take pathfinder and use it to run an E(whatever) with more gradual progression for if you use a slower exp track, and you could also use it to run a low-magic game.

As for Joining a game, I try to avoid Pbp (its too slow and impersonal for me) - If I'm going to game D&D Online, I'll likely use Neverwinter Nights to do it. And I live in Canada. I wont be driving out to your house. heh.

Scheduling games can be a pain to do, I hear you.

Your E6 Carrion Crown does sound pretty cool though.


DΗ wrote:

Those "Steps" aren't a bad way to do the more gradual progression.

Another Ruleset? I'm not talking about another ruleset, just a subsystem a couple pages (with some detail, but no more than 10 pages) long with a fairly refined way of making the game not rely on magic gear, or magic consumeables, perhaps with some notes about anything to look out for with specific classes or what have you. Maybe some tips on what to do if you also remove full casters (and now dont have much in the way of available healing either).

Between that and the Step System you just pointed out (Awesome btw) you could take pathfinder and use it to run an E(whatever) with more gradual progression for if you use a slower exp track, and you could also use it to run a low-magic game.

As for Joining a game, I try to avoid Pbp (its too slow and impersonal for me) - If I'm going to game D&D Online, I'll likely use Neverwinter Nights to do it. And I live in Canada. I wont be driving out to your house. heh.

Scheduling games can be a pain to do, I hear you.

Your E6 Carrion Crown does sound pretty cool though.

Just play Conan d20. It fixes those problems.

Cheliax

Darkwing Duck wrote:
Just play Conan d20. It fixes those problems.

It doesn't quite. I want to be able to make use of my Pathfinder Stuff. There are nowhere near as many player options in Conan.

It has no magic items, true. But its not exactly compatible with the Pathfinder CR System (which makes it harder to know what monsters in the PF Bestiary will be too hard). Additionally, you can't exactly pick up a Pathfinder Class or Archetype and just go with it (even a nonmagic one).

As for the slower gradual leveling, it doesn't have that either, but I suppose you could apply SKR's "Steps" easily enough.


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I would like to see low-magic support as much as other people want to see Epic level content. Brushing the desire for such rules off as having been done online is not satisfying.

Epic rules were done in 3.5. I don't tell people to stop asking Paizo for them.

All Paizo would need to do is suggest a lower level cap, change experience progression, give a brief list of modified CRs for commonly used monsters and how to recalculate them if you go beyond the suggested cap, and give ideas on how to handle the rare "Artifacts" (magic items up to +2 or +3 stuff, I'd guesstimate). Doesn't require a hardcover print, just a few optional rules from people who have thousands of hours of collective experience playing and countless more in homebrewing, editing, etc.

No one wants them to rewrite the d20 system, or retcon all of the APs to be playable with zero magic items... I don't think.

Cheliax

@Foghammer: This

I just want some "official" alternate rules, that let you do low-magic support with the game content already available.

I want to still be able to throw a level 5 monster at my level 5 party, even if they have no magic gear.

Or allow them to make use of archetypes and PrCs that dont include magic.

I could see allowing 2/3 casters, like Bards, and not allowing Wizards, Clerics, Druids, etc.

Conan does low magic, as a standalone game. That's true. But its not easy to use with Pathfinder Materials.

Saying use Conan, is about equivalent to telling the people who want mythic rules "Use 3.5", as Foghammer pointed out.


DΗ wrote:

Personally I'd love to see an "official" set of (obviously, optional) rules to account for removing magic items completely while not buggering up the CR system; as well as maybe something that allows you to get the benefits of a level more gradually, for people who want slow but steady progression, or who want to run an E8 game with slow leveling but more frequent improvements than you get if you just slow down how often you get levels.

Anyone else have any interest in that?

.

.
Removing Magic Items completely... goes with dropping/modifying quite a few monsters.

Andoran

Void Munchkin wrote:
Removing Magic Items completely... goes with dropping/modifying quite a few monsters.

I don't see why. I think it would be easier to use a lower the CR and adjust the effective EXP.


There are a few house rules I could think of right off the top.

1- Increase crit ranges.
2- Have masterwork weapons use the next size category higher weapon die.
3- There was a 3PP book back in 3.0 that had an improved sneak attack feat so rogues could roll d8s rather than d6s.
4- Change the fluff of magic weapons. Masterwork is +1 but perhaps some smiths have improved metalurgy techniques that grant higher pluses or wider critranges, improved weapon hardness grants automatic sundering chances.
5- Prior to 3.0 there was no such thing as damage reduction. Many creatures took half damage from certain types of weapons.
6- Use the hit point progression from PF Beta.
7- Give out an extra feat whenever they get feats from the default progression.
8- Grant abilities or stat bonuses from focused training or activity. Perhaps the city bound quick rogue grows more lean and hardy after weeks of travel and adventuring and gets a +2 bonus to con. The cleric and wizard enjoy discussing esoteric points of philosophy or lore each benefits from the exchange. As the both get a bump to stats. This is also a great way to reward characters adding deapth to the characters not just optimizing them.
9- Use only monsters that are coporeal.
10- Use more "mundane" monsters that have class levels.

Cheliax

RedDogMT wrote:
Void Munchkin wrote:
Removing Magic Items completely... goes with dropping/modifying quite a few monsters.
I don't see why. I think it would be easier to use a lower the CR and adjust the effective EXP.

Or Buff all the humanoid characters so they can manage without magic gear.

Cheliax

Gnomezrule wrote:

There are a few house rules I could think of right off the top.

...House Rules...

Yeah. some of those house rules would help do it. There are a few fan-made house rules to accomplish similar things, as well.

I'm hoping for some official support though, hence the thread.

I dont like the "Mundane Enchanted Items". I want to see the 10th level fighter be able to pick up *ANY* longsword and be effective for his CR. A longsword that's twice as good as a regular, non-masterword longsword, would be what I would consider epic, in a no-magic item game.

Characters who don't rely on increasingly ridiculous gear would be nice.


RedDogMT wrote:
Void Munchkin wrote:
Removing Magic Items completely... goes with dropping/modifying quite a few monsters.
I don't see why. I think it would be easier to use a lower the CR and adjust the effective EXP.

.

.
DR+20/Magic? Quite a few monsters have DR+x/magic, and as someone mentioned, a few are incorporal, so...


DΗ wrote:
Or Buff all the humanoid characters so they can manage without magic gear.

For the record, I feel like that sort of defeats the purpose...

I suppose when I aim for low-magic, I should also specify lower-fantasy as well. Not so far below what's already given though. I just want to hear less "Oh, another +1 weapon? Throw it in the bag of holding til we get to town..." and more "Oh dang. Orcs. Do you think we can take them, guys?"

I want to see my party really twist over who to hand that cloak of resistance +1 off to, and whether or not it's worth the trek into hostile lands to find that crazy hermit who might be able to enchant your blade. Not because I'm sadistic, but because I want to have a sense of wonderment and awe in these things that is a step away from what I normally play.

Nothing is wrong with the current system, I'd just like to be able to switch it up now and then.


@ Foghammer

Low-Fantasy might also mean less fantasy races/monsters... "Horor" is something else.


We played a low magic campaign it was a blast. It started with an orc raid on our hometown. We called them deamons throughout the campaign.

Cheliax

Foghammer wrote:
DΗ wrote:
Or Buff all the humanoid characters so they can manage without magic gear.
For the record, I feel like that sort of defeats the purpose...

It's not that uncommon for me to throw orc encounters at a level 8 to 10 party. I give class levels to pretty much everything, on a regular basis. The Satyr may have levels in Bard, or Druid. I may have made a Satyr Race (roughly on Par with the Core Races) and put classes on top of that.

You hear about the "Blink Dog Monk" PC Munchkin. I ran a Blinkdog Monk NPC. He wasn't a combat challenge, but I made him obnoxious, and the players tried to attack him a few times. I think he knocked a few of them out, but didnt kill anyone.

Sometimes I'll do something weird, like take a grizzly bear, raise it's int to 8 or 10, make it bipedal, give it a level (or a bunch) in fighter, or something, and give it some gear. Those are interesting encounters. Or the using Barbarian levels to make a badger scarier - without making it any more intelligent or anything.

My Purpose there is to be able to pull monsters from the bestiary with a minimal number of changes (Incorporeal and DR would change most I imagine) and have them be the right difficulty for the party still.

I want the existing CR system to still work after I remove the magic items (so I dont have to do something tedious like recalculating Monster CRs). Obviously that means ditching DR/Magic (Maybe sub it out for another type of DR), and likely not using Incorporeal creatures.

I guess I'm saying I want something that gives me Level = CR instead of Level + Magic Gear = CR.


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Void Munchkin wrote:

@ Foghammer

Low-Fantasy might also mean less fantasy races/monsters... "Horor" is something else.

I'm not disagreeing with the first part of your statement, but I think you mistake my desire for tension and doubt for "horror." If you take away most of the benefits of magic, things that were once moderate threats become more threatening. That isn't horror. Horror is something that creeps into the back of your mind and grates at your nerves, crushes your spirit, and drives you mad with fear.

There are different definitions of low-magic. I hypothesize that the easiest way to handle it is not to eliminate magic items altogether, but to diminish their availability severely, reduce spellcasting without crippling casting classes, and adjust everything else accordingly without altering the way characters are built at 1st level.

There's simply no need in rewriting the entire game to achieve these results when a small set of rules inside a larger book will do. In fact, I think the perfect place to put them would be in the same book with the epic rules.


I like that idea Foghammer create one book with rules for low-end games and in that same book have the other half dedicated to high-end games.

Could even do the thing where each end is a cover that reads towards an end in the center.

Grand Lodge

Daaaaaaaamn Foghammer - you NAILED it.

They can sell to a wider market that way ie. make a profit.

Thats a VERY good idea. I love it.


2 people marked this as a favorite.

Wall of Text Warning - but do read on for a take on a low(er) fantasy campaign.

1st LEVEL CHARACTER GENERATION
At 1st level the PC’s choose both a secondary character class (Commoner, Aristocrat, Expert or Warrior) and a standard character class. The stat-blocks of both classes are ‘overlaid’ and the best of either is taken for the 1st level stats of the character. Some permissible secondary character class backgrounds (Aristocrat, Expert, Warrior) may require at least 1 pre-qualifying Trait to be taken, the Commoner secondary class being the only exception.

Starting characters gain 1 free Trait, and may use their 1st level generic FEAT to gain 2 additional Traits instead if they choose. Commoner characters gain 2 free Traits to represent their unusual heroic starting potential.

CAMPAIGN PC/NPC LEVEL DEMOGRAPHICS
Levels 1-2 (~30% of demographic; just under 1 in 3 people)
These are the apprentices, neophytes and uninspired peasants et al in the general population. This level range is for the young and inexperienced adventurer, or the run-of-the-mill commoner.

Levels 3-4 (~66% of demographic; just under 2 in 3 people)
Trained, competent and/or sufficiently experienced, it is within this range that a person has solidly established their place in the world. Not many people move beyond this level, as they do not lead lives which challenge them sufficiently to do so.

Levels 5-6 (3.95% of demographic; just under 1 in 25 people)
Mature journeymen, the supremely well-trained and/or widely experienced are in this range. Generally well regarded and sought out for their abilities, people in this range command good prices for their services and find as much work through personal recommendation as self-promotion. Adventurers of this level are relied upon to tackle dangerous challenges.

Levels 7-9 (~0.045% of demographic; around 1 in 2,500 people)
Hardened veterans or those immersed for a lifetime in their craft or profession, this level range is for those who, for the vast majority of normal people, have reached the fullest extent of their abilities, or for the more heroic – those who have accomplished deeds worthy of widespread and significant recognition, and who are expected to succeed against the odds.

Levels 10-12 (0.004% of demographic; 1 in 25,000 people)
Exceptional masters of their professions recognised far and wide, or renowned heroes whose deeds live on in songs the Bards sing. This level is nearly always the shining pinnacle of a persons’ career even if they started life gifted. Potentates will offer rich rewards to secure their services.

Levels 13-16 (0.0009% of demographic; less than 1 in 100,000 people)
Famous heroes whose deeds are immortalised in song, tapestries, statues and folktales. They are frequently on a first-name basis with Powerful Monarchs, Kingmaking Cardinals, Arch Magi or Elder Dragons alike.

Levels 17+ (0.0001% of demographic; 1 in 1,000,000 people)
These are the rare legends whose sagas will live a thousand years or more. The world shakes where they tread and the greatest powers of the world take pause at the mention of their names.

CHARACTER ADVANCEMENT, WEALTH AND LOW FANTASY GENRE
• Treasure rewards from adventures reflect NPC wealth advancement levels - new characters above 1st level beginning with NPC basic wealth as starting money and rewards being roughly balanced against this progression
• Character advancement uses the Slow track and easy-average CR encounters give no XP
• Bonus XP is given for good role-play based on a 0-10% of current level XP band per session

HERO POINTS
CR’s in the game are based primarily on Campaign Demographics and NOT typically on CR balanced ‘adventure paths’. In-game clues/hints/guidance help to steer PC’s in the direction of manageable challenges, but these will not be ‘designed in’ or ‘spoon-fed’ to PC’s.

To this end, Hero Points are adopted for the campaign but players are STRONGLY advised to save these for the ‘Cheating Death’, or ‘Special’ functions they can facilitate (as written), aimed at surviving encounters with threats they cannot handle.

CHARACTER ALIGNMENT
Characters or entities who have not made a particularly focussed stand somewhere within the polarised ethos of the game world do not ‘transmit’ their alignment.

In effect, detect spells, powers and similar abilities to determine or effect alignment get no reading or do not work on those who are not Undead, Outsiders, or Paladin/Cleric type classes.

Changes in alignment forced by strong good/evil/law/chaos actions or the use of aligned powers can flag the character responsible as aligned unless there are mitigating circumstances, relevant remorse/regret or GM-determined cultural, racial or religious factors to counterbalance this.

OTHER IMPORTANT BALANCING ISSUES

1. Scrolls and Potions fully available.
2. Crafting extends to 'Grandmaster Crafted' (another +1 damage or +hit) with steel, and a further +1 to hit for mithril or +1 damage for for adamantine - which now require Grandmaster crafting to create.
3. Spellcasting classes limited to those which max out at 6th level spells or less.
4. Drop all DR/magic in the game to 20% of the numerical value and change to DR/-.
5. Drop all +skill bonus magic and items from the game.
6. Allow Alchemists to make Talismans and Amulets which give a limited range of Save Bonuses (+1 to +2) vs magic and at a high level of skill, levels of SR.
7. Increase the number of 'inherent' magic 'items' in the game like the Nighthags stone. Make their bonuses situational - or limited in effect -a Lamias Hide cloak which gives +2 vs Charm effects; a Stone Giants Gall Stone which gives Resistance 5 against Acid damage; or a Hellhounds Tooth which when worked into a sword allows it to do do +2 fire damage. Alchemy and a Knowledge (Innate Magic) skill can be prerequisites as can weapon crafting.


Caliburn101 wrote:


1st LEVEL CHARACTER GENERATION
At 1st level the PC’s choose both a secondary character class (Commoner, Aristocrat, Expert or Warrior) and a standard character class. The stat-blocks of both classes are ‘overlaid’ and the best of either is taken for the 1st level stats of the character. Some permissible secondary character class backgrounds (Aristocrat, Expert, Warrior) may require at least 1 pre-qualifying Trait to be taken, the Commoner secondary class being the only exception.

<Snip>

CHARACTER ADVANCEMENT, WEALTH AND LOW FANTASY GENRE
• Treasure rewards from adventures reflect NPC wealth advancement levels - new characters above 1st level beginning with NPC basic wealth as starting money and rewards being roughly balanced against this progression
• Character advancement uses the Slow track and easy-average CR encounters give no XP
• Bonus XP is given for good role-play based on a 0-10% of current level XP band per session

<Snip>

Interesting ideas, thank you.

Maybe I've missed something though. Where does the secondary class get used?

It's not clear to me whether character progression occurs as in the standard rules i.e. taking levels in class of your choice, or whether you are required to alternate between the two classes? I think that the intent is to alternate between the two, or that some means of overlaying is applied but I'm not sure.


I think the community should decide, collectively, at what level the magic bonuses for the core 5 magic items needs to be.

Once they've done that, it'll be easier to write alternative rules which don't use those core 5.

Taldor

DΗ wrote:

Personally I'd love to see an "official" set of (obviously, optional) rules to account for removing magic items completely while not buggering up the CR system; as well as maybe something that allows you to get the benefits of a level more gradually, for people who want slow but steady progression, or who want to run an E8 game with slow leveling but more frequent improvements than you get if you just slow down how often you get levels.

Anyone else have any interest in that?

Low fantasy does not necessarily mean low magic. High fantasy does not mean lots of magic either, for that matter. High fantasy is a setting/story that has no connection to the real world. Examples: Dragonlance, Warhammer, Game of Thrones/Song of Fire & Ice, etc.

Conan low fantasy because it acknowledges the existance of the real world that we know.. it's set in our hypothetical preshistoric past.

For that matter, Pathfinder technically IS already low fantasy, as this thread demonstrates.


Caliburn101 wrote:
...

Very nice ideas!

I'd like clarification on the utility of the secondary NPC class too.
For a low-fantasy campaign I also scale down the class levels of the people in the world even more.

This wonderful article should prove a useful reading too.


Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber

Is there really a need for special rules just to remove magic items?

Or are you also saying that class abilities that mimic magic items would also be removed?

Because I have always run very low-wealth campaigns, and basically it amounts to adjusting the CR of encounters down some.

If you start a campaign at level one and continue from there, you'll pretty quickly get a feel for what CR encounters are appropriate.

Encounters that I throw at the current party are challenging even with a CR that sometimes is 2/3 the party average, while a standard wealth-based CR-appropriate encounter would likely result in a near TPK (they'd likely escape before total TPK).


gbonehead wrote:

Is there really a need for special rules just to remove magic items?

Or are you also saying that class abilities that mimic magic items would also be removed?

Because I have always run very low-wealth campaigns, and basically it amounts to adjusting the CR of encounters down some.

If you start a campaign at level one and continue from there, you'll pretty quickly get a feel for what CR encounters are appropriate.

Encounters that I throw at the current party are challenging even with a CR that sometimes is 2/3 the party average, while a standard wealth-based CR-appropriate encounter would likely result in a near TPK (they'd likely escape before total TPK).

It's not quite so simple as just taking out magic items. Remember that not everyone has been playing tabletop RPGs for decades like it seems a majority of forum-haunts have. Not all of us are so experienced enough so as to be able to adjust on the fly with favorable results. Why force newcomers to the system to spend years learning what to do by trial and error when it's easier to just write up a few pages with supplemental material that serves as a guideline for reducing these things.

And of course, I could always fall back on the old "some people won't do it if it isn't in an official product" argument. It's true though.

Again I will turn back to epic rules crowd ("mythic" I think they want to call it now). If it's so easy to adjust what we have to suit another play style, why are we pestering Paizo for rules supplements?


Clarification:

The secondary character class 'overlay' allows (just at first level) for the player to take the skill points (and class skills) of both - and to take the best of each static stat - like starting HP dice, BAB, Saves etc. It is a meld of the two (always to the benefit) but in essence the character is 1st level main class (just with the extras this provides as a background bonus).

as far as the demographics are concerned - with a typical 'medieval' game running at about 5-10 million people per mega-continent, the high levellers are very rare indeed.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I would really love rules for dialing up and down the magic and magic items (not the same thing) in pathfinder. The base assumption of the game is VERY high magic, and the ability to easily (read the proffessionals do lots of the work for us) tell a different kind of story (ala game of thrones) would be very useful.

That said, OP, in case you are interested, I am currently using a homebrew set of rules to replace the overwhelming majority of magic items in my game described here. But it still has a high magic assumption, just low magic items.

Though some of the options in anachronistic adventures the Investigator by super genius games is giving me some ideas for a completely low magic game.

Cheliax

Yeah, I was thinking Low Magic Items as one thing, and Low Magic in General as another. I'd like to have support for both.

But Low (read as None whatsoever) Magic items, scrolls, potions, or wands, would be something I would be interested in.

The trick is that it might nerf some classes much more than others to do so.

And then if I want to combine that with low or no magic overall, I can just restrict access to caster classes. Either limit the levels you can take, or just ban full-casters.

Grand Lodge

I've heard the ban route seems to work best... either via multiclass (need x mundane levels to y magical levels) or elimination of full casters (except as NPCs -where they make fine villains).

I had one stab at low magic a while back - GM said no caster levels (was Lankhmar) and it worked well but recovery from adventures was tough (we made friends with an old Army Surgeon who helped out) but it generally required we watch our HPs very very carefully and run to hole up.

Only ran a few sessions but it did get old.

Cheliax

Helaman wrote:

I had one stab at low magic a while back - GM said no caster levels (was Lankhmar) and it worked well but recovery from adventures was tough (we made friends with an old Army Surgeon who helped out) but it generally required we watch our HPs very very carefully and run to hole up.

Only ran a few sessions but it did get old.

For sure. Even if you ditch magic in general, you need some sort of healing that doesn't take months.

I'd probably just make up a couple alchemical items for healing. If you don't want them usable in combat, make them larger than an ounce (your typical D&D potion). If a Healing potion is a pint, you won't be chugging it in combat.

But I'd just make some Troll-Based healing items. Multiplied HP Gained on Rest, or low amounts of regen every round (with the amount per minute/hour listed for convenience.)

Grand Lodge

A good way - though a PAIN in book keeping is make ALL damage except those from Critical and failed Saves is NON lethal damage and heals at that rate...

Critical/failed saves damage is actual trauma and needs to heal at the normal rate... ie hospital rates or healing magic


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Remember there is more then just hit point healing to worry about. Diseases, negative levels, poisons, ability damage. The game assumes you can find (at least in time) ways to reverse these otherwise certain enemies become wildly disproportionate in challenge to their CR. I mean heck, with HP, just adopt a stamina system (like the wounds and vigor one in UC or the homebrew one that is floating around) helps a ton with hit point damage, but the other kinds of conditions are still a problem.

And cutting magic items hurts all classes but it is definately dispproportionate. A wizard would have trouble with longevity and getting enemies to fail his saves, a fighter just wouldnt be able to do his job anymore.

Cheliax

Kolokotroni wrote:
And cutting magic items hurts all classes but it is definately dispproportionate. A wizard would have trouble with longevity and getting enemies to fail his saves, a fighter just wouldnt be able to do his job anymore.

If you consider scrolls in the magic items, the Wizard can't do his job either. Every wizard I've played, more than 50% of WBL goes into your spellbook, because you need to have a wide variety of spells, and you need to have *insurance* so that you don't become a peasant when your spellbook gets stolen/destroyed.

And of course, the Longevity and DC Boosters make up most of the rest of the WBL for the wizard.


Diseases, negative levels, poisons, ability damage could all be treated by the Heal skill (I'm saying they -could- be, not that they all currently are).


Some things to make Low-Magic Pathfinder playable (at least in my opinion, and sorry, I don't know how to do the "list" tags):

1) Use slow XP progression
2) Use 20-25 point buy (I would create several arrays so that you don’t have people start with stats too high and too low by using several dump stats)
3) Use NPC Wealth instead of PC Wealth and lower the CRs they encounter by 1-2
4) I would add 50% of the base skill points for each class:
a. Barbarian: 6
b. Bard: 9
c. Cleric: 3
d. Druid: 6
e. Fighter: 3
f. Monk: 6
g. Paladin: 3
h. Ranger: 9
i. Rogue: 12
j. Sorcerer: 3
k. Wizard: 3
5) Use more “mundane” encounters, saving the more esoteric creatures and traps as bosses.
a. Aberrations: Rare to Very Rare
b. Animals: Very Common
c. Constructs: Uncommon
d. Dragons: Rare to Very Rare
e. Fey: Uncommon
f. Humanoid: Very Common to Common
g. Magical Beast: Uncommon
h. Monstrous Humanoid: Uncommon
i. Ooze: Uncommon to Rare
j. Outsider: Rare to Very Rare
k. Undead: Uncommon
6) Use more traps and hazards
7) Possibly use the Words of Power instead of normal spell casting.
8) Use NPC boons instead of magic or monetary rewards
9) Modify the craft skill as per the Making Craft Work pdf (or something else that works for you)
10) Use the rules for Piecemeal Armor, Armor as Damage Reduction, Called Shots, and Wound/Vigor

There are probably a lot of other ideas but these should give a good start on making adjustments and deal with a few potential problems. I also don’t see a need to alter the classes if you go this route. I would recommend that you not allow Item Creation feats to increase wealth by much since that will skew things too far towards the casters. In fact, it might be better to either remove them or at least remove them as bonus feats. If removing them as bonus feats, one should consider just using the PFS rules on this.


Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

No Thank you Just my 2 Cents

Cheliax

Joey Virtue wrote:
No Thank you Just my 2 Cents

No worries. Alot of people (myself included) have that opinion on the above-20-rules.

I feel that the best part of the game is 1-12 (Particularly 4-10), and that one thing that kindof gets in the way is how reliant you are on getting the next big gear upgrades, and how losing your gear is worse than having your character die.

So I want rules to make the characters rely less on fancy gear, and to be able to draw out the gameplay and make the best part of the game last longer.

I dont have that much interest in 15+, so 20+ is a book I simply wouldnt have a use for at all.

What I want is basically the opposite of epic rules. I want to be able to:

> Remove reliance on expensive gear. Losing your main weapon and armor can possible cripple your character indefinitely due to the unrecoverable funds that represents. You're unable to get quality replacement gear because you lost the old stuff.
> Be able to take a slider and use it to tone down or completely remove magic.
> Draw out leveling in terms of power, but not have long periods of stagnation where nothing progresses.


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Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
DΗ wrote:

Personally I'd love to see an "official" set of (obviously, optional) rules to account for removing magic items completely while not buggering up the CR system; as well as maybe something that allows you to get the benefits of a level more gradually, for people who want slow but steady progression, or who want to run an E8 game with slow leveling but more frequent improvements than you get if you just slow down how often you get levels.

Anyone else have any interest in that?

Oh, hell yes!

And yes, I have Conan and like my Pathfinder better! (As much as it hurts to diss my beloved Conan RPG.)

No, I don't want to play an E-anything.

And there's far more RPG evidence supporting lower-fantasy demand than there is for higher-than-20th level play. So if you Epic-play fans want your book, back our book, too!

Cheliax

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BPorter wrote:

Oh, hell yes!

And yes, I have Conan and like my Pathfinder better! (As much as it hurts to diss my beloved Conan RPG.)

No, I don't want to play an E-anything.

And there's far more RPG evidence supporting lower-fantasy demand than there is for higher-than-20th level play. So if you Epic-play fans want your book, back our book, too!

Or yaknow, put both in the same books as a sort of "Pathfinder at different Power Levels!" book.

Throw in Gestalt as an additional variant, and I think you've seriously got something.

And maybe if its a book of variant play, it could include some of what I was hoping would have been in Ultimate Combat - Stuff that increases the coolness of combat. Make skirmishing be competitive with (not feat-improved) full attacking *Without Feat Expenditure*, make combat maneuvers worthwhile for everyone, etc. Essentially, Make martial combat more interesting.


DΗ wrote:
Make skirmishing be competitive with (not feat-improved) full attacking *Without Feat Expenditure*, make combat maneuvers worthwhile for everyone, etc. Essentially, Make martial combat more interesting.

Elaborate? I think that what you want to achieve here could just be done via clever tactics and a non-stick-in-the-mud DM, but I'm not 100% sure I'm on the same page.

Cheliax

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Foghammer wrote:
Elaborate? I think that what you want to achieve here could just be done via clever tactics and a non-stick-in-the-mud DM, but I'm not 100% sure I'm on the same page.

The loss of all iterative attacks from moving makes skirmishing nowhere near as attractive an option as standing and full-attacking. Obviously it needs to be a little better in terms of damage, but its kindof bland. I think I'd prefer if moving around doing standard action attacks were somehow more competitive with the full attack.

Likewise for combat maneuvers that you aren't getting to sub into a full attack routine.

Because its almost always so much better to full attack, combat can get really tedious sometimes, particularly in a melee heavy party.

I'd like to have all kinds of combat stunts you can do, which are mechanically different (and not just refluffed attacks).

And I'm not talking about new feats. I'm talking about changing combat overall to make it more dynamic and less repetitive. If you have to spend feats to do it, then it wont have a big enough effect on the game.

I'm talking about more dynamic combat for everyone.

Grand Lodge

Star Wars Saga edition had a crack at that - Multiple attacks were feats (and required the full round stand still thing) but there were lots of other fears/talents out there that worked well with mobile attacks (extra dice, move, fire or attack, move) options that open up earlier in the game etc


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Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
DΗ wrote:
BPorter wrote:

Oh, hell yes!

And yes, I have Conan and like my Pathfinder better! (As much as it hurts to diss my beloved Conan RPG.)

No, I don't want to play an E-anything.

And there's far more RPG evidence supporting lower-fantasy demand than there is for higher-than-20th level play. So if you Epic-play fans want your book, back our book, too!

Or yaknow, put both in the same books as a sort of "Pathfinder at different Power Levels!" book.

Throw in Gestalt as an additional variant, and I think you've seriously got something.

And maybe if its a book of variant play, it could include some of what I was hoping would have been in Ultimate Combat - Stuff that increases the coolness of combat. Make skirmishing be competitive with (not feat-improved) full attacking *Without Feat Expenditure*, make combat maneuvers worthwhile for everyone, etc. Essentially, Make martial combat more interesting.

I'd be cool with a combined book so long as they are fully fleshed out ideas. I wouldn't want it to be like some of the sections in Ultimate Combat that only got a few pages and definitely didn't get enough mechanical treatment to make them viable rules rather than "give this a try" ideas.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber
DΗ wrote:

@Foghammer: This

I just want some "official" alternate rules, that let you do low-magic support with the game content already available.

I want to still be able to throw a level 5 monster at my level 5 party, even if they have no magic gear.

Or allow them to make use of archetypes and PrCs that dont include magic.

I could see allowing 2/3 casters, like Bards, and not allowing Wizards, Clerics, Druids, etc.

Conan does low magic, as a standalone game. That's true. But its not easy to use with Pathfinder Materials.

Saying use Conan, is about equivalent to telling the people who want mythic rules "Use 3.5", as Foghammer pointed out.

For what you want... quite frankly it'll probably take more than "just a couple of pages of rules." You have to deal with monsters that are generally created with the gear in mind, you also have to look at recovery as many parties rely on purchased happy sticks. to take the heavy load of healing.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
DΗ wrote:
Joey Virtue wrote:
No Thank you Just my 2 Cents

No worries. Alot of people (myself included) have that opinion on the above-20-rules.

I feel that the best part of the game is 1-12 (Particularly 4-10), and that one thing that kindof gets in the way is how reliant you are on getting the next big gear upgrades, and how losing your gear is worse than having your character die.

So I want rules to make the characters rely less on fancy gear, and to be able to draw out the gameplay and make the best part of the game last longer.

I dont have that much interest in 15+, so 20+ is a book I simply wouldnt have a use for at all.

What I want is basically the opposite of epic rules. I want to be able to:

> Remove reliance on expensive gear. Losing your main weapon and armor can possible cripple your character indefinitely due to the unrecoverable funds that represents. You're unable to get quality replacement gear because you lost the old stuff.
> Be able to take a slider and use it to tone down or completely remove magic.
> Draw out leveling in terms of power, but not have long periods of stagnation where nothing progresses.

I would love to see paizo's take on this as well, though I think we are likely to get a whole heck of alot of 'let the dm sort it out' from them. Their hands off approach is both refreshing and frustrating at times. Sometimes I want as a dm for the proffessional game designers to do the work for me. That said I am now using my alternate to the wealth syatem, and it worked pretty well so far(link posted higher up). And it has 2 stages, the first part heroic disticntions replace about 40-60% of character wealth, and add in the genius archetype and it replaces all but one or two magic items the characters may have, items which will never just be a +3 sword or a cloak of resistance. It is very cool that I gave my players a seeing stone in the first session and their first thought was not, 'how can we sell this to buy better weapons'.


Is this really about low fantasy or just low magic items. Arguably a magus needs no magic sword he enchants it via his own power. Is that what you mean?

If you are wanting to stress skill over reliance on items. It really is all about feats.


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Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Gnomezrule wrote:

Is this really about low fantasy or just low magic items. Arguably a magus needs no magic sword he enchants it via his own power. Is that what you mean?

If you are wanting to stress skill over reliance on items. It really is all about feats.

Less reliance on magic items is the biggest example. I dislike the term Low Magic, however. Conan, for example isn't low-magic, necessarily.

Basically, things like:

AC - improving without "booster" magic items

"Dangerous" magic - Let me keep my spellcasters, but give me some mechanical means of balancing their power with greater risk...

"Grittier" play - increased lethality -- that works within the Pathfinder framework. Expand the bleed damage & called shot rules, for example.

Basically, an in-game treatment for tipping the Pathfinder scales closer to swords-n-sorcery than high fantasy.

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